Italian bioplastics firm Bio-on SpA has signed a licensing and production deal with TAIF JSC of Russia.
The deal is valued at 17.6 million euros ($20.1 million) and includes design work for a PHA bioplastic plant to be built in Tatarstan, where industrial investment firm TAIF is based. The plant is expected to be operational by 2020.
TAIF is expected to invest 90 million euros ($102.7 million) in the plant, which will have annual production capacity of around 22 million pounds per year. Officials with Bologna-based Bio-on said in an Oct. 24 news release that the plant will be Russia's first PHA site.
The agreement "is an important milestone … in the process of consolidating our technology on international markets," Managing Director Vittorio Folla said in the release. "It helps in the construction of new production plants that can meet the growing demand for product in a number of sectors."
TAIF General Director Albert Shigabutdinov added that his firm considers green chemicals to be essential because "we believe that biodegradable polymers can efficiently promote a gradual decrease in environmental pollution" and that the materials "would contribute to creating new opportunities in the field of plastics production."
Bio-on has developed a process in which sugar beet pulp is fermented to yield PHA resins. Company officials said the materials are 100 percent natural and biodegradable.